Elite Author T. Lynette Yankson Teaches Perseverance in Her Children’s Book About a True Story

Averi Melcher
June 03, 2024 | 5 mins

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T. Lynette Yankson, a native of Detroit, MI, experienced the dynamic 1960s and 1970s. She has lived in Atlanta, GA, for 40 years, balancing marriage, parenthood, and a thriving professional career.

She now lives in North Carolina, relishing time with her loving family, especially her “beautiful, brilliant” grandchildren. She finds joy in engaging with the bright young minds, valuing her faith, family, friends, and health.

In her childhood, visits to Alabama to see her paternal family, the Princes, and maternal family, the Forniss', left a lasting impression, which inspired her educational pursuits and successful career as a Procurement Analyst and technical writer.

Her maternal family also inspired her nonfiction children's book, which is a true story depicting the challenges Colored people faced to overcome racial barriers in America in the early 1900s. Inspired by her book and her story, we wanted to take a moment to highlight our latest, self-published author in the Author Accelerator Elite program.

Book Title: Papa The Popular Printer: A True Story about The Forniss Printing Company
Genre: Children's nonfiction picture book
Website: https://tlynetteyankson.com

Papa The Popular Printer - By Selfpublishing.com Elite Author T. Lynette Yankson

Who is this book for?

It is a children's book full of engaging imagery that is meant to be read with and to young children, but the learning doesn't have to stop there. This is for anyone who wants to be encouraged and to encourage future generations.

If you are interested in and inspired by true success stories of African Americans and just ordinary people living out their dreams – against the odds with persistence and a never giving up spirit – then this book is for you!

What inspired you to write about your family’s story in the form of a children’s book?

I experienced Detroit during the 1960s and 80s – aka “The Heydays” of the Motor City Capital and Motown. That, coupled with visits to my maternal family's home and hearing their stories inspired me throughout my life.

Then, in February of 2022, during African American History Month, I was in a store with books on famous African Americans like John Lewis and President Obama.

I began thinking my beautiful brilliant grandchildren should know about the extraordinary life of their great, great grandfather, my Grandfather James Henry Forniss. As a young man he was a shoe shiner in the early 1900s, Post Slavery-Jim Crow era. He did extraordinary things in his lifetime, with faith, persistence, and hard work.

He miraculously evolved to become a Professional Printer and Owner of The Forniss Printing Company – this book is his story. And now it's here to inspire my grandchildren and young ones all over the world.

What will kids learn from reading Papa the Popular Printer?

I decided to write a children's book because my grandchildren and youth are impressionable. I believe that when encouraged at an early age to “Never Give Up,” children tend to thrive. So I wanted to share that message.

  1. How to maintain strong FAITH through your struggles and life's challenges.
  2. How to have persistence.
  3. How contributing to society via hard work and service to the community is important because enhances our entire world.

Tell us about your own journey as a first-time children's book author – what was that like?

I like writing and enjoyed my career as a Procurement Analyst and Technical report writer for 31 years. I've also been in a book club for over 30 years and have friends who are authors.

Once I decided to write a book, I didn't know where to begin. So I decided to begin with prayer and daily meditation about my “way forward”. I prayed for focus, faith, courage, and wisdom.

I wrote my goal: Become an Author and placed it on my altar.

I went to the library and perused, Writing Children's Books for Dummies. But I didn't feel confident that I would complete the book on my own. After continuous sincere prayer, I started searching on the internet. My faith and wisdom led me to discover selfpublishing.com. which offered a free one-hour workshop.

I took notes and realized the training would be valuable. So, about a week later, I joined another free session. At the end, we were invited to join a one-hour free one-to-one personal coaching session. During that session I was convinced that it was a good fit and that I would get the coaching and assistance I felt I needed to actually self-publish my book.

But making my dreams come true had a cost. As a world traveler, I thought, “WOW, with that amount of money, I could go on a very nice, long, adventurous vacation.”

As good as that sounded, I realized a vacation would not have left a legacy for my family and the world. I wanted – and still do want – people to hopefully learn lessons on the importance of faith, persistence, The Power of One, and contributing to the advancement of society.

I prayed for the courage wisdom, and confidence to make the best decision.

Now, I'm sitting here writing this as a published author!

Did you experience any challenges while writing?

I guess the hardest part of the training was me – a Baby Boomer – having to learn more about technology. Which is a blessing and something I needed to do anyway.

Also, I was challenged to write a book that was interesting, captivating, and colorful. That, and one that successfully taught lessons on faith, overcoming anger, persistence, and making a positive contribution to society.

On the other side, my favorite part of the process was interacting with my coaches, peers, and fellow authors – especially in the selfpublishing.com Children's Book group. Community and a network are important. So important that I'm attending the Author Advantage Live event in Austin this year as well!

What are your plans for the future?

Promote and sell my new book. Keep sharing lessons learned. And market to everyone!

I've enjoyed the opportunity of reading and sharing my book at various private schools, a live book event, and, of course, with my family and friends.

If you want to follow along, the best place is my website. If you go there, you can see a photo of some children in South Africa who read my book and are holding a real copy of Papa the Popular Printer in their hands! AND my photo shoot with celebrity Tom Joyner on the 2024 Fantastic Voyage Cruise is there as well.

Ready to become an elite author and write the next bestseller? Get in touch with our team!


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